Actually on page 4 of this thread Yomi did try another build, moving things around in a very similar fashion (SC I-V (dropping epic fort and the 2 epic skill foci), epic will instead of fort, etc)
Great minds huh?
So it looks like choosing which build is kind of a wash. Guess I'll just look at them some more, compare and contrast, and see what I can come up with. Thanks for the added input. One thing you did differently that I like is you stuck w/ handaxes rather than using a feat to go Kukri. Since I don't have tiefling halfling, though, I'll probably go with the Derzagon Dwarf (I'm too lazy to see if I spelled those correctly), so I may use the rapier instead of the axe even. Unsure yet. Either way, combining your notes with those of Yomi's should make it pretty hard for me to screw this build up.
Yes, I did a HD build with self conceal 5, which I like a lot (Liisi). She was able to open all the DB chests at level 51, though admittedly had some helpful equipment. I'm more worried about possible future areas where not taking the epic skill focuses in search and disable trap may come into play. Looks like your build would have similar rogue abilities.
I notice that your build has 141 AC at level 60. I believe mine would top out at 135 with the same dex if I wear +14 UR robes and +16 everything else. Wish I knew what I was missing to get that extra 6 AC (not that it seems to be relevent in any area other than pyramid, which is why I'm going to drop the last two great dex feats for better saves). Maybe you're counting +4 from epic cleric buff? Oh, and one nice thing about super high AC, is one can switch shields to one with an immunity but cruddy AC bonus, and still have quite an acceptable AC. At lower levels I was always swapping shields in and out to make sure the AC stayed as high as possible while covering the immunities needed -- later it just isn't that crucial in most places.
The ab bonus might be nice, as it'd help you critical more often at lower levels and when soloing without any support (in other words, a L35 weapon since you have no GMW, Keen, bardsong, cleric buffs, etc.). I found about ab 65 was pretty good for hitting things often enough, but higher means more crits. I solod the ssith barracks with her at something like level 52 with an ab of 63 and it worked, though was a bit slow. The thought of going through whole rooms of priests healing themselves made me not bother with the rest of the area. I can also say that with ab 65 using the L35 kukri, even boosted +2 with the horn of blasting, I cannot overcome DB's regen (and the DB kukri does about half the damage on him, go figure). Close, but not enough. On the good side, he can't hit me, so we just sit there with him swishing and me poking. After about 10 shadow potions I called it quits and waited for the mage to recover from ISP crash and log back on (sadly watching him now quickly return from near death to uninjured).
Post by Lord FlashHeart on Sept 11, 2006 22:54:43 GMT
I'm not sure as to the specifics of how you get the missing AC, i just compared my build to Halfling Death and saw that dex and featwise, its exactly the same. Mish has a better knowledge of the best items, and as far as i'm aware i think the cleric buff is included in the HD ac calculation.
If I include epic cleric buff (+2 armor, +2 shield) and small stature (+1 against larger creatures) and dodge (+1 against current target or last attacker), then I come up with the missing 6. Half the time I can't even get a GMW much less an epic cleric buff (though I love both, as well as bardsong). Dodge is a little iffy since it only counts on one target. Small stature is likely to apply in enough cases to count.
Yes, expertise and improved expertise are a choice when to use them, trading off ab for ac. I've removed expertise from my hotkeys since I just never use it, and don't even use epic warding from items any more once the AC (from character sheet) hit 128 or so. There will likely be harder areas where these will be useful, and I've only been to pyramid a couple times.
I'll agree that self conceal 5 is worth a lot. Also, the open lock skill of either build is probably the same. Only the search and disable trap are 10 higher (and I dropped both for my SC5 build).
With good equipment, and especially with self conceal, the sands, sanders, and xevils can hardly hit you unless you sit around flatfooted for a while. The fort save is high enough for most of those, so it hasn't really been much of an issue except the scarabs in pyramid which tend to get lots of hits on my flatfooted AC while I stand around wishing I could target them. Will saves are more of an issue in most places as you also found from your experience. It also makes a difference whether your equipment / buffs are giving you +5 to saves or +20. The first time I played this build in illithids I would bet I was in the +5 range, so will saves were almost guaranteed failure (managing sonic, lev, mord, and spider rings was a disaster). With gear or buffs (yay bardsong) it stands a chance, and epic will would help.
practically at high level, I believe (correct me if I'm wrong guys) the real difference will be tiefling having an advantage of 1 feat (2 dex advantage but need to take blind fight) on top of +1 ac and +1 ab to most enemies (medium and large size ) due to small stature, and potentially another +1 ac and +1 ab if great dex 10 is taken.
This comparison however rules out the con advantage (more hp and 1 more fort save) of derrzagon which is important, but with a build like this and good equipment, this could be overlooked (gonna draw flame here hehe) due to the build's survivability with good equipment. On the other hand, +2 ab and +2 ac probably don't break the char at the top of the char build. The ab is not enough to offset the need for gmw, and ac should be good enough (again, this is with good equipment tho), even though perfectionists (i.e., me! ) who loves every drop of stats will disagree
Other minor differences will not stand out at *high* level, such as the puny 18 SR bonus of derrzagon or the elemental resistance of tielfling (or will it? does this resistance stack with equipment? if it stacks with equipment then it's of some values esp coupled with only partial immunities)
One of the only irrefutable advantage of the halfing though is that the "better equipped" dwarves cannot squeeze through some of the tight spaces in HG
Post by cathedralmaster on Sept 23, 2006 23:14:04 GMT
This comparison however rules out the con advantage (more hp and 1 more fort save) of derrzagon which is important, but with a build like this and good equipment, this could be overlooked (gonna draw flame here hehe) due to the build's survivability with good equipment.
The equipment I use doesn't max constitution and that lack of hp has never been a problem for me. Unlike a str build, you shouldn't be taking a lot of hits or a load of damage anywhere so you don't need as massive a cushion of hp.
Ahem, one of the weakness (gasp!) of not getting hit that often, errr, not a build weakness per se... It makes players like me very lazy, and sometimes unattentive If for over ten minutes I'm not getting hit by anything I start to lose my concentration, and think that this will continue the way... That's when flatfoot kicks in and before I even saw my HP going down I'm resting on the floor, and hopefully not by myself in ssith or illithids...
Just going back to Derrzagon, it is very nice imho, and comes quite close to tiefling, especially given the fact that it's only a normal subrace. After doing a HD build with derrzagon, I pondered many a times to re-make another with tiefling... it just wansn't attractive enough to push me to re-make a char, given the limited play-time I had. My eyes shifted its focuse immediately upon Atomie or Planewalker
Looking at the weaknesses in this build I am thinking of trying a variation with better will and saves - but it does involve heresy:
I think toughness at 1st level is overrated. Sure, it gets you 60 more HP at level 60. But that's at level 60, and most of our time is spent muddling though the 40s, where the AC of this build is far more important. I seem to hit the potion button long before I am at my final 40 HPs, but I know this is one of Yue's cardinal rules, so consider me a heretic for even suggesting it.
WIth a Derzzagon build, which has Blind fight built in, I am proposing "Luck of the Heroes" at level 1 and then Iron Will or Discipline in place of the Blind Fight in Pre-Epic feats.